NegOr biz group urges Marcos to ignore diocese’s NIR bill veto bid

Posted by watchmen
April 22, 2024



The Negros Oriental Chamber of Commerce and Industry Inc. (NOCCII) has urged President Ferdinand Marcos, Jr. to disregard the Diocese of Dumaguete’s request to veto the Negros Island Region (NIR) bill.

In a letter addressed to Marcos, NOCCII president Edward Du said the group was “happy and grateful” for the President’s recent commitment to sign into law Senate Bill 2507, which aims to establish the NIR.

“We are very excited, and we really appreciate your support for the NIR bill,” Du said in a statement.

However, the business community in Negros Oriental was taken aback by the diocese’s subsequent letter, which urged Marcos to veto the bill.

“Right after your historic pronouncement, the business community of Negros Oriental was shocked and dismayed by the attached letter from the Diocese of Dumaguete imploring to veto Senate Bill 2507,” Du said.

“It is for this reason that we are writing to give us the opportunity to manifest our full support to your pronouncement,” he added.

The group said the diocese’s allegations of absence of comprehensive information dissemination and meaningful public consultations on the NIR bill are misleading.

Du pointed out that several months prior to former President Benigno Aquino III’s signing of Executive Order (EO) 183, establishing the NIR for the first time in 2015, a series of province-wide public consultations on the bill’s advantages and disadvantages were conducted.

The NIR’s existence was short-lived as former President Rodrigo Duterte revoked EO 183 in August 2017 without any public consultation, Du said.

The Diocese of Dumaguete did not raise any complaints during the NIR’s two-year implementation, he added.

Earlier, the diocese urged Marcos to veto Senate Bill 2507, establishing the NIR, due to “lack of information dissemination and the absence of public consultation with diverse sectors and stakeholders.”

They also cited reasons for opposing the NIR establishment, such as “disproportionate impact” on less privileged sectors, unequal distribution of resource allocation and representation, and the threat to exacerbate existing inequalities./JB, WDJ

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